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Ezra and Nehemiah: Ezra 7:1-10

Ezra and Nehemiah: Ezra 7:1-10

 

After these things, during the reign of Artaxerxes king of Persia, Ezra son of Seraiah, the son of Azariah, the son of Hilkiah, 2 the son of Shallum, the son of Zadok, the son of Ahitub, 3 the son of Amariah, the son of Azariah, the son of Meraioth, 4 the son of Zerahiah, the son of Uzzi, the son of Bukki, 5 the son of Abishua, the son of Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the chief priest- 6 this Ezra came up from Babylon. He was a teacher well versed in the Law of Moses, which the LORD, the God of Israel, had given. The king had granted him everything he asked, for the hand of the LORD his God was on him. 7 Some of the Israelites, including priests, Levites, singers, gatekeepers and temple servants, also came up to Jerusalem in the seventh year of King Artaxerxes.

8 Ezra arrived in Jerusalem in the fifth month of the seventh year of the king. 9 He had begun his journey from Babylon on the first day of the first month, and he arrived in Jerusalem on the first day of the fifth month, for the gracious hand of his God was on him. 10 For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the LORD, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.

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This section of Ezra marks the second of the three waves of returning exiles recorded in Ezra and Nehemiah. The first wave included those sent by Cyrus’s decree (Ezra 1). The return of Ezra to Jerusalem marks the second wave, while the return of Nehemiah marks the third. Each of these demonstrates that the Lord is faithful to the promise he made to his people.

Ezra 7:1-10 gives an overview of chapters 7-8. Verses 1-6 briefly present Ezra’s credentials. Not every male Israelite was eligible to serve as a priest in the temple. Not every priest was eligible to serve as the high priest. The credentials for service were important because they confirmed that Ezra was the Lord’s authorized representantive. By knowing this, the people could be certain that they were hearing the Lord’s Word. Today we can be certain that we are hearing and being taught God’s Word by comparing what we hear and read to the Bible.